According to the National Retail Federation, back-to-school and back-to-college spending is forecast to increase this year, according to various recent reports. It’s not too late for a look at back-to-school trends, as past research has shown that late August features the top shopping days ranging from mobile shopping to kids’ influence on purchases, says the report.
All in all, says the report, it looks like a bright season for back-to-school and back-to-college spending. Based on the NRF annual surveys, the combined total to be spent on K-12 and college is predicted to reach $75.8 billion, a sizable 11% increase from last year’s $68 billion, and represents the highest forecast since 2012.
Back to School Spending Forecasts ($Billion)
Back To School
Back To College
Source: National Retail Federation (NRF), August 2016
Of the combined total, $48.5 billion is projected to be spent on back-to-college, up 12.5% from $43.1 billion last year. The remaining $27.3 billion is for back-to-school, up about 10% from $24.9 billion last year. Both figures this year are the highest in about a decade, with the exception of the peak in 2012.
Other studies also project an increase in back-to-school spending, though to different degrees. For example, eMarketer expects a 2.6% rise in retail back-to-school sales, an improvement from last year’s 1.6% increase but down from prior years. Consistent with previous years, though, the back-to-school season is predicted to account for more than one-sixth (17.2%) of full-year retail sales.
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